"First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." -- Mahatma Gandhi

New Media Flexes Muscle

July 9th, 2007 by mopns · No Comments

The “new media” demonstrated it’s power to affect government at all levels recently.

On the statewide level, the governor’s veto of HB327 last Friday – due mainly to a PubDef documentary and the Post Dispatch consequently following up with a story a few weeks – later doomed this legislation.

Both stories suggested that St. Louis developer Paul McKee was getting a special tax credit for his business to redevelop portions of North St. Louis.

On the national front, talk radio is credited for singlehandedly killing the shamnesty bill in the Senate a couple of weeks ago. Regardless of what you think of the new media’s impact on the news and shaping public opinion; its impact is real!

Pub Def and The Post Dispatch both spun this story as a sweetheart deal for McKee. The fact of the matter is, the tax credit – that was supposedly only crafted for Mr. McKee – was available to any one who qualified for the credit, which we believe is purchasing 100 acres of land or more. Judging by all the loft development in recent years in St. Louis and Kansas City, there are plenty of other developers who could have easily qualified for these tax credits as well.

As avid proponents of the free market system, the question we ask is: Should Mr. McKee be single out and criticized for simply being an entrepreneur and having a vision for a decaying neighborhood?

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